Kolkata: Dengue cases have reached an alarming proportion in West Bengal with highest number of dengue deaths in the country so far. As per the state health department, since January, the state has witnessed around 19 dengue deaths, besides over 20,000 cases being reported mainly from the districts of North and South 24 Parganas, Howrah, Hooghly and Kolkata.
On Thursday, a BSF jawan, deployed along the India-Bangladesh border in West Bengal’s Malda district, has died due to dengue. The soldier hailed from Gopalganj district of Bihar.
The Bengal government told the Calcutta high court on Thursday that dengue had claimed 38 lives in the state from January till November 15 this year, prompting the court to say that it was “still not satisfied with the death figure”.
Twenty-three of the victims died in government hospitals and the remaining 15 in private hospitals, the advocate general said. Treatment records of 22 other patients suspected to have died of dengue in private hospitals were still under examination by the state health dep-artment, Dutta added.
Not just dengue, even chikungunya — a debilitating but non-fatal viral illness — has registered a steep and steady rise in the city after this unseasonal rain. This erratic rain causes flood of Dengue, Chikunguniya. Battling the virus is the country’s premier medical institute, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), which has reportedly registered a rise in the number of chikungunya cases.
The state had received reports of 40 dengue deaths from private hospitals, Dutta said on Thursday. After examining treatment records of 18 of these 40 suspected dengue cases, the state health department found 15 of them were “genuine dengue deaths”, but three were not.
Neighbouring state, Kerala, which has recorded the highest number of dengue with around 15,612 cases and 25 deaths, is another reason for several districts of Tamil Nadu such as Coimbatore, Madurai, Theni, Toothukudi and Virudhunagar facing its brunt.
Doctors ask people to stay alert and take preventive measures to keep away the infections they may likely catch due to water logging and contaminated food. Children remain at a higher risk as they carry hazardous infections unknowingly when outside or in schools.